Diocese of Peoria Fails to Tell the Public Where Offenders Live

Illinois Attorney General Report Shines Additional Light on Clergy Sexual Abuse in Illinois

(Peoria, IL) – Earlier this week, the office of Illinois Attorney General Kwame Raoul released an investigative report which revealed that at least 1,997 survivors were sexually abused by 451 Catholic priests in the 6 Catholic dioceses in Illinois. This report appends former Attorney General Lisa Madigan’s 2018 findings that Catholic dioceses in Illinois received allegations of more than 500 priests that had not been previously shared with the public.

“We applaud Attorney General Raoul’s decision to further expose the perils that once were and may remain in the dioceses in Illinois,” said Jeff Anderson. “As revealing and vital as these reports are, Catholic leadership in Illinois possess documents identifying perpetrators, when and where the abuse occurred, and who is responsible for covering the abuse up. We call on all dioceses in Illinois to release this information to the public immediately.”

The Diocese of Peoria’s List of Priests Removed from Ministry Due to Allegations of Abuse of a Minor fails to provide where each of these accused offenders lives and works today. Many are alive and believed to be living in Illinois, possibly with access to children. The diocese found that each of the priests listed below sexually abused a minor, but the diocese does not inform the community where they are. Jeff Anderson & Associates found the last known addresses of these offenders but believes the diocese has more current information:

Priest’s Identity

Fr. Terry Cassidy

Fr. George H. Hiland

Fr. M. Duane Leclercq

Fr. John M. Onderko

Fr. Jerome Pilon

Fr. Michael R. Van Acker

Fr. William D. Virtue

County Allegedly Residing

Peoria County, IL

Indian River County, FL

Bureau County, IL

Rock Island County, IL

Washtenaw County, MI

Rock Island County, IL

Kane County, IL

“The fact that the Diocese of Peoria has not informed the public that these perpetrators may be living in these communities proves that the diocese only acts in self-preservation,” said Jeff Anderson. “It is time for reckoning in the dioceses of Illinois. Priests who sexually abuse children must be exposed and treated no differently from registered sex offenders. No person who abuses a child should receive any leniency for their heinous crimes.”

In addition to Jeff Anderson & Associate’s independent research, the identities of Catholic clerics and religious brothers who are still alive with substantiated allegations of child sexual abuse who are included in the 2023 Office of the Illinois Attorney General Report on Catholic Clergy Child Sex Abuse are included below:

Roman Pfalzer

Thomas Murphy

Philip Kraus

Frank Martinez

Victorian Ostmeyer

Samuel Pusateri

William J. Spine

Toussaint Perron

Thomas Miller

Disclaimer:  All alleged perpetrators identified in this press briefing have been publicly identified in a list released by an archdioceses or dioceses or the 2023 Office of the Illinois Attorney General Report on Catholic Clergy Child Sex Abuse accusing them of child sexual abuse. The claims against these individuals may not have been thoroughly evaluated in a civil or criminal court. The allegations should not be considered proven or substantiated in a court of law. All individuals should be considered innocent until proven guilty.